Did I hit my head or something?? Entirely possible.
I’m not sure why it is that we Paleo folks and the Vegans seem to be at war with one another. Well, I’m sure it has something to do with diametrically opposed food philosophies…but still, I’m not sure where the general sense of disdain comes from. Personally, I have no issue with the Vegans. I mean, sure, I think their diet is a little off kilter–such low fat intake and reliance on foods that punch holes in our gut (i.e. grains and legumes) doesn’t really do it for me. What’s more, I happen to think the science behind the whole thing is a little fuzzy. And the China Study is not peer-reviewed. Just BTW. And can we get one goddamned thing straight? Paleo is not Adkins. Moving on…
So where did this little endeavor come from? Am I high or what??
My husband went to high school and is still good friends with a successful Vegan cookbook author. Needless to say, we tend to engage in a little ideological debate from time to time, and lately it’s gotten me thinking about the issues between the two lifestyles more and more. Veganism has been around since the 19th century but as Paleo has become more popular in recent years the tension has grown. While they are in so many ways polar opposites, what Paleo and Veganism DO have in common is the core belief that the typical American diet is f*cked up. We both advocate the consumption of whole foods (although I do have an issue with may Vegans’ reliance on artificial and processed products like tofu, fake cheese, egg replacers, and vegetable oils). We are both looking to find the healthiest diet possible in an attempt to mitigate and eliminate the diseases of modern civilization. But naturally, we both want to be right.
I’m not here to convert anyone. Quite the opposite, in fact. What I’ve done is created a peace offering to the Vegan community–a week full of recipes that are Paleo, Vegan, and have enough nutritional value from all macronutrient groups to make a good meal (I was really tempted to do a week full of salads and sweet potato fries, not gonna lie). I sleep like a baby at night with my Paleo Teddy Bear, and I’m sure many Vegans are the same…albeit with a big, cuddly head of lettuce or something. I understand that beyond all the science-y stuff, too, people choose not to consume animal products for a variety of reasons from allergies to religious beliefs to genuine ethical reservations. That’s fine.
Admittedly my ingredient list is limited…Paleo and Veganism have very little overlap but I honestly believe it can be done! Just as with all of my recipes, everything will be gluten-free, grain-free, soy-free, and legume-free. I won’t use white potatoes or rice. I won’t use any cane sugar, agave nectar, corn syrup, or artificial sweeteners like stevia or Splenda. I will not use guar gum, xanthan gum, or soy lecithin to include products or pantry items containing any of the aforementioned items or their derivatives. Obviously, I will not be using meat, eggs, dairy, honey, or any product derived from animals. But I sure as hell won’t be using Vegan Cheez. But there will be dessert at the end!!
Wish me luck, and get ready to OD on coconut and avocados!